Driver's License

ID checks might be more difficult for residents of Missouri, Illinois and two other states.
Department of Homeland Security

Missouri IDs do not meet the federal standard, and lawmakers are dragging their feet to do something about it. 

After 9/11, Congress passed the Real ID Act in 2005 as an extra security measure in airports and military facilities. The Department of Homeland Security’s Secure Driver’s Licenses web page includes a quote from The 9/11 Commission Report, “For terrorists, travel documents are as important as weapons.”

12.12 Law enforcement officers were present outside the Thomas F. Eagleton US Courthouse in downtown St. Louis.
Rebecca Smith | St. Louis Public Radio

Updated at 4:28 p.m. Jan. 8 with announcement from Homeland Security- The regulatory clock is now ticking loudly for state lawmakers in Jefferson City, Mo., and Springfield, Ill., to ensure that residents of both states can use their state-issued driver's licenses and identification cards as proper forms of identification to board commercial airliners.

ID checks might be more difficult for residents of Missouri, Illinois and two other states.
Department of Homeland Security

Republican Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder may have put U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., in a difficult position with his harsh comments about a law Blunt originally co-sponsored when he served in the U.S. House.

The law establishes federal standards for issuing driver’s licenses. Residents of a few states, including Missouri and Illinois, whose licenses don’t comply could be denied access to federal facilities or commercial airplanes. Passports will work if federal agencies say those licenses are no longer acceptable government issued identification.

Gov. Jay Nixon’s administration showed an “indifference” to Missourians’ privacy rights, according to a report from a House committee examining the controversy over the Department of Revenue’s handling of personal documents, including conceal-carry permits.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: A review by the state auditor's office concludes that the Missouri Department of Revenue is between a rock and a hard place when it comes to processing driver's licenses. No matter what it does, it’s violating a state law. The only question is: Which one?

Flickr | jimbowen0306)

Perhaps in an effort to put an end to an ongoing political battle over the practice, Gov. Jay Nixon has signed legislation blocking the Department of Revenue from scanning and storing documents required to get a driver's license.

Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio

One day after a Missouri House committee issued subpoenas to several members of Governor Jay Nixon's (D) administration, a Cole County judge has issued a preliminary order blocking the subpoenas.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Missouri House Speaker Tim Jones appears to be in a standoff with Gov. Jay Nixon’s office, after a judge stepped in Thursday to block Jones’ attempt force the governor’s top aides to testify before a state House panel.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: While a Missouri House panel was continuing its probe of the state’s driver's license division, Gov. Jay Nixon was in St. Louis announcing that he’d vetoed a bill to double the fees charged by the private “fee offices’’ that give out the licenses.

The governor said Wednesday that it was unfair to ask Missourians to pay $22 million more each year in additional license-related fees but get no additional service in return.

(Kristi Luther/St. Louis Public Radio)

Missouri drivers will not see their license fees double. Governor Jay Nixon has vetoed a bill that would have increased an array of fees at your local license office.

Under the bill, the costs of registering a vehicle would have gone up by $1.50. It also would have doubled the application fee for titles and obtaining or renewing a driver's license.

The bill was projected to raise $22 million annually, but Nixon in St. Louis Wednesday said it didn't specify the improvements that would be made using the money.

(Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio)

Updated 4:38 p.m.

A Missouri House committee formed to investigate the Department of Revenue’s scanning of driver’s license applicants’ documents has begun two days of hearings into the controversy.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Gov. Jay Nixon announced Wednesday that he would reduce staff and services at the Division of Motor Vehicles if the General Assembly passes a budget funding two-thirds of its fiscal year budget.

But the chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee said such a move is unnecessary -- and added that the legislature needs to pursue its plan to  force the agency to change how it issues driver's licenses.

(via Flickr/jonrawlinson)

Updated 3:06 p.m. with comment from Gov. Quinn. Will be updated further. Reporting from Brian Mackey used in this report

The Illinois House has approved legislation allowing those who are in the U.S. illegally to obtain driver's licenses.

(via Flickr/jglazer75)

Updated 12:10 p.m.

A proposal that could make Illinois the next state to allow people who are in the U.S. illegally to get driver's licenses has passed out of a House committee.

It's ready for a House floor vote. Gov. Pat Quinn says he'll sign it, if it comes to his desk.

Original story with additional detail: 

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

Updated at 3 p.m. to include comments from Cullerton and Edgar comments. Tony Arnold contributed reporting from Chicago, and Brian Mackey from Springfield, Ill.

Illinois Senate President John Cullerton says he wants to pass a bill out of the Senate next week to give driver's licenses to illegal immigrants. And Gov. Pat Quinn says he'll sign the legislation, if it lands on his desk.

Quinn and Cullerton attended a bipartisan news conference Tuesday that included former Gov. Jim Edgar and Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka, both Republicans.

The Missouri House has passed legislation requiring driver’s license exams to be given in English only.

The final debate boiled down to safety versus respect for immigrants.  State Representative Tishaura Jones (D, St. Louis) says she represents constituents from several different nationalities, and added that every member of the House descended from immigrants.

UPI | Bill Greenblatt

The Missouri House has given first-round approval to legislation that would require driver’s license exams be given only in English.

Currently, the state of Missouri provides the written driver’s exam in English and eleven other languages.  House Member Mark Parkinson (R, St. Charles) says his bill follows the spirit of the state constitution’s mandate that public proceedings be conducted in English.

(via Flickr/Robert S. Donovan)

The Missouri House has given first-round approval to legislation that would require driver’s license tests to be given in English only.

Supporters say doing so would help immigrants assimilate easier into American culture and promote safety, since road signs in Missouri are in English.